TOPIC: What Is The Best Workout To Get Big & Ripped At The Same Time?

The Question:

Lower reps for getting big, higher reps for getting ripped ... right? The general idea seems easy, but how can one combine the two ideas together?

What is the best workout to get big and ripped at the same time? Be specific. List exercises, sets, reps, etc ...

Who would you recommend this workout to? Explain.

Is this workout as effective as bulking and then cutting?

What other factors need to be perfect in order to achieve the ripped look?

The Winners:

  1. soundcheck129 View Profile
  2. History in Effect View Profile


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1st Place - soundcheck129

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Contrary to popular belief, getting big and getting ripped don't have to be mutually exclusive. Let's face it - no one really wants to be in a constant cycle of bulks and cuts, especially if you want to have an active social life. But it's really not necessary to add pounds of unwanted fat just to diet intensely in pursuit of a fine physique.

What Is The Best Workout To Get Big And Ripped At The Same Time?

There's a disturbing trend in the bodybuilding world - the embrace of absolutes. You may be under the impression that there are only two ways of training, high reps/low weight and low reps/heavy weight. The first, you've probably heard, is for getting lean, while the latter is reserved for those attempting to get big. But what about mixing the two? That gray area is what we're about to explore. Before you can get big AND get ripped, you've got to get SMART.

Before You Get Big And Ripped You Gotta Get Smart.

In order to get big and ripped, we're going to use a routine that focuses on compound lifts but also touches upon isolation exercises. With some days reserved for heavier weight and low reps, and some with lighter weight and high reps. Off days will feature cardio and abdominal exercises. While your preferences may be different, I like to begin each new exercise with two warm-up sets to concentrate on form and ROM.

Day One: Pull 1

  • Deadlift: 3x6
  • Seated Row: 3x6
  • Barbell Shrug: 3x6
  • Lat Pulldown: 3x6
  • Stiff-Legged Deadlift: 3x6
  • Dumbbell Curl: 3x6

Day Two: Cardio and Abdominals

  • 30 Minutes HIIT (Bike/Treadmill)

  • 3x Ab Circuit:

  • Leg Raises

  • Weighted Crunches

  • Reverse Crunches

  • Side Bends

Day Three: Push 1

  • Squat: 3x6
  • Bench Press: 3x6
  • Calf Raise: 3x6
  • Arnold Press: 3x6
  • Seated Leg Press: 3x6
  • Triceps Extension: 3x6

Day Four: Cardio and Abdominals

  • 30 Minutes HIIT (Bike/Treadmill)

  • 3x Ab Circuit:

  • Leg Raises

  • Weighted Crunches

  • Reverse Crunches

  • Side Bends

Day Five: Pull 2

  • Lying Leg Curl: 3x12
  • Bent Over Row: 3x12
  • Stiff-Legged Deadlift: 3x12
  • Pullups (Weighted): 3x12
  • Dumbbell Shrug: 3x12
  • Barbell Curl: 3x12

Day Six: Push 2

  • Incline Dumbbell Press: 3x12
  • Front Squat: 3x12
  • Triceps Pushdown: 3x12
  • Seated Calf Raise: 3x12
  • Military Press: 3x12
  • Dumbbell Flyes: 3x12

Day Seven: Off/Active Rest

Who Would You Recommend This Workout To?

I would recommend this workout to anyone except beginners, as it can get pretty intense. It is great for those who want to stay in great shape all year and enjoy challenging themselves in the gym. This routine wards off monotony with the alternating high/low rep days. It builds core strength but also size.

Is This Workout As Effective As Bulking And Then Cutting?

I would say that this is going to be more effective than bulking and cutting, because there is little risk of adding too much fat during bulking or losing too much muscle during a cut. Also, I feel that the "See Food Diet" mentality of bulking, as well as the restrictive cutting cycle, can have unwanted psychological effects. Wild fluctuations in weight are not healthy for the body, metabolism, or the wardrobe, and gaining too much weight can be damaging to joints.

What Other Factors Need To Be Perfect In Order To Achieve The Ripped Look?

While training and intensity are obviously important, the time spent in the gym is only half of this equation. Nutrition plays a huge role - you can work for hours in the gym but if you're not eating enough, you'll never see size gains, and all the food in the world won't pack on muscle if you don't hit the weights hard. On training days, aim for a surplus of about 500 calories - enough for growth, but not enough for fat gain. On cardio days, keep your caloric intake at maintenance level. You may also want to add in some carbohydrate cycling, consuming fewer carbohydrates on cardio days. However, you will need to be consuming every macronutrient (carbohydrates, protein and fat) for growth, so try to eat a balanced diet with plenty of meat and vegetables.

Smaller, more frequent meals will ensure that you don't go too long without eating and then binge due to hunger, and will also keep blood sugar in check, preventing sluggishness and "food comas." While eating 'clean' is important, don't be afraid of eating 'dirty' foods as long as you factor them into your caloric intake. Also, excessive sodium intake can leave some looking bloated, so try not to go overboard with the salt shaker, and stay away from packaged, processed foods as much as possible.

Stay Away From Processed Foods As Much As Possible.

And don't forget - your muscles grow when you rest, so take it easy when you're not hitting the weights. Try to stay stress free (to keep cortisol levels at a minimum) and aim for eight hours of sleep each night.

2nd Place - History in Effect

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Many people claim that getting big and ripped at the same time is almost impossible without steroids. Those people are in fact wrong ... very wrong. Frank Zane was a beast and ripped as could be. In the beginning, he only used high reps with low weight, but only with heavier weights did he win Mr. Olympia. After his Mr. Olympia victory in 1977, Zane remarked that "the only way you can get muscle size is through heavy training." ( Book of Champions, Joe Wuebben, 25). Light weights and light reps won't work you, but moderate to heavy weights will. You also have to concentrate on the weight. You might have physical strength, but you need that mental to concentrate on that particular body part in able to perform at your best.

What Is The Best Workout To Get Big And Ripped At The Same Time?

Monday - Chest and Biceps 3x10

  • Barbell Press
  • Dumbbell Incline Press
  • Flyes
  • Barbell Curls
  • Preacher Curls
  • Concentration Curls

Tuesday - Back and Triceps 3x10

  • Deadlifts
  • Lat Pulldown
  • Cable Rows
  • Close-Grip Bench Press
  • Overhead Extension
  • Reverse Grip Cable Pushdown

Wednesday - Cardio and Abs

  • Hanging Knee Raises 6x6
  • Hanging Knee Raise To The Side 4x6
  • Side Bends 4x6 (low weight; not trying to make your waist wider with heavy weight)

Thursday - Shoulders and Traps 3x10

  • Military Press
  • Lateral Row
  • Bent-Over Lateral Rows
  • Dumbbell Shrugs
  • Barbell Shrugs

Friday - Quads and Hamstring

  • Leg Extension
  • Squats
  • Leg Press
  • Lying Leg Curl
  • Stiff-Leg Deadlifts

Saturday - Cardio and Abs

  • Decline Weighted Crunches 6x6
  • Machine Crunch 4x6

Sunday - Off-day

Who Would You Recommend This Workout To?

This workout is great for beginners, but it is recommendable to everybody. It is pretty straightforward hitting each body part in different ways. My first workout consisted of 3 sets of 10 and it's a great bodybuilding routine to start off at. If your more advanced, you could use 5x5 or German Volume Training. This workout is simple, but still effective. I don't want to burden you down in specialized exercises, because this routine covers the bases.

Is This Workout As Effective As Bulking And Then Cutting?

The workout is effective either way as you still want to build quality muscle. You might be bulking, but I am pretty sure you want to eat a lot of high protein/moderate carb food that will get you bigger, stronger and still be ripped. The workout is still effective when cutting because you will probably be adding some extra cardio sessions to cut or just turning up the intensity of the ones you already have.

What Other Factors Need To Be Perfect In Order To Achieve The Ripped Look?

It is about conditioning too. Take it from Larry Scott who won the first Mr. Olympia. "The real secret here is ... taking little or no rest between sets"( Wuebben, 164). I am guessing he means about 45-to-60 seconds between sets which is what I try to do and what I read that 2-time Mr. Olympia Jay Cutler also uses.

The Real Secret Is Taking Little Or No Rest Between Sets.

Don't forget cardio too as I mentioned earlier. I seen some pretty big ripped people running on the cardio machines to get off that little fat and reveal those deep separated lines in the quads and hamstrings.

You can't talk about getting big and ripped without mentioning nutrition. You got to eat big to look big. Protein builds muscle, so take it in. Carbs needed for energy. You need fats(unsaturated) for to protect your organs and to produce at your best. Here are some brief tips that I recommend when it comes to nutrition.

  1. Plan your meals in advance. This will enable you to eat if your in a hurry and still meet your requirements for your diet or mass building plan. Factor in cheat meals because those keep you sane instead of INSANE.
  2. Eat clean. This follows the first tip. You plan your meals in advance, so you will be more likely to eat clean.
  3. Don't forget the mental. You might see that juicy doughnut or pizza, but focus on your goals inside and what you need to do to get big and ripped. You take in protein not doughnuts unless it's a designated cheat time.
  4. Motivation. You have to stay motivated in order to get big and ripped. If your not motivated, you will not set those goals. I see MTV: MADE all the time and those kids want to quit, but they are motivated to continue on in setting their goals. If your motivated, you can't be stopped.
  5. Get sleep. You need to rest. Your body recovers during rest and you need this. Without adequate rest, you will not be performing at your best.

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